Thursday, January 18, 2018

Do you qualify for our discount today?

"Do you qualify for our discount today?"

"What discount?" I asked. Even though, from the moment the word 'discount' left her lips, in the back of my head, I knew what she was going to say. But in that 1/4 of a second it took her to reply, I found myself silently begging...  Please don't say Senior, please don't say Senior please don't say Seniorplease don't say Seniorplease GOD don't say Senior.

"Our Senior Discount."

There it was. January 18, 2018. I was mistaken for someone 65 years of age. I am 49 and a half. My birthday's in July.

Instead of laughing out loud at the absurdity of it, I woodenly said "No," while vainly reeling from shock. As I swiped my debit card I justified the mistake. She's young(er), it was because I had asked for iron pills, she saw me limp up after my dance rehearsal as my arthritic hips gave me grief, she doesn't know that asking a middle-aged woman if she qualifies for the Senior Discount is the equivalent to asking a woman who carries a few extra pounds if she's pregnant.

Just a number. It's just a number. It's a number over a decade more than my actual number... but it's just a number. I drove home, my self-pity holding me in a near-hypnotic daze.

I walked into the house. David and Rissa shouted cheerful "Hellos."

"Would you please look up what the Shoppers Drug Mart Senior Discount age is?" I asked, my confidence pathetically crawling along on the floor beside me.  Just a number, it's just a number.

"Sure," said David. "Why are we looking up..."

"Because the girl at the Pharmacy counter asked if I qualified for the Senior Discount!"

There were quickly stifled snorts of laughter from the peanut gallery.

"Not cool guys.  Not. Cool."

When I entered the living room, David and Rissa were each racing on their laptops to find the information. "65 years," David winced. "But some stores, might lower it to 55"

"I am 49 fucking years old! At the least she thought I was 5.5 years older than I am and at the most 15.5 YEARS!! Oh my God! Unless she thought I was 70!! I was having such a good week!"

And then it struck me. "When I went up to the counter, I was wearing my fucking pink sock monkey hat!!"

"This same hat, 3 years ago, got me carded at the LCBO!! Which means that in the past 3 years I have apparently aged 40 years, because they ask anyone who looks 25 years or younger for their ID at the LCBO.  Bring me my hat - this needs to be documented."

"Oh Mama," said Rissa. "You don't look 65."

"It's not that I want to be mistaken for 35," I grumped, slamming the hat back on my head. "I don't even mind being mistaken for my actual age. I don't mind being 49. I LIKE being 49! I'm kicking ass at 49!! But Sixty-fucking-five?!?"

"You totally should have taken the discount," said Rissa.

"If I hadn't been so gutted, I would have," I said, as David grabbed his phone to take my picture.

"You do not look 65," said David. "You do not look 55. You don't look 49." He kissed me before shooting the photo above. "You are a stunning woman who put all other woman to shame. A Goddess. My Goddess."

Next time? I'm strutting up to that Pharmacy counter in all my Goddess glory and I'm taking the fucking discount.